Just a quick pointer today toward the heartland where a labor situation is brewing at the Omaha Symphony…
Recently, negotiations broke down between the Omaha Symphony Musicians’ Organization (represented by AFM Local 70-558) and the Omaha Symphony Association. According to a press release issued by the musicians, the talks have broken down due to what they describe as a “refusal to negotiate in good faith, salary & benefit gaps.” Nevertheless, according to a press release (pdf) issued by the Omaha Symphony Association, the “Management is willing to discuss at anytime the various aspects of our respective positions.”
On the surface, the salary gaps indicated in the musicians’ press release have some readily accessible numbers (which are available in the Adaptistration Compensation Report, $15 + $3 S/H) which break down as follows:
>From the 99/00 season through 04/05 season:
The Omaha Symphony Musician Base Salary increased from $21,572 to $27,502: a cumulative increase of 27.489% or an average of 4.58% per year. The Omaha Symphony Executive Director compensation increased from $104,434 to $171,952: a cumulative increase of 64.651% or an average of 10.77% per year.
As such, it is easy to see that the executive compensation has increased at a rate which more than doubles the musician base salary. Stay tuned; I’m certain there is more to come. In the meantime, you can learn more about the musicians’ positions at their website and – as of this publication date – the only information from management is via their press release from 06/01/2007 (linked above).